Before we get started, have you seen Huffington Post’s feature of me in “Celebrating The Diverse Spirituality And Religion Of African-Americans”? You should check it out.

Music Inc
Without a doubt, I love this game. I learned about it via Tumblr and am glad I did. It is a free mobile game created by UK Music, the Intellectual Property Office and Aardman Animations – I am a big fan of Wallace and Grommit since I was a child so I was like “Meh, meh, SOLD.” – and it creates a pretty realistic glimpse into the music industry and “let them experience the challenges encountered by artists in the digital age”. Oh man, is it a great game, here are some screen shots:



I like that it is pretty neatly packed with you trying to find artists to sign and furnish them into world-class performers that, of course, will earn you major money but it comes with unforeseen bumps such as song leaks, the fiscal effects of piracy, frustrated musicians, online flame wars and how everything means so much, even if it is just a little. You can track song stats your performers made, release songs, shelve songs, put folks on tour, get them producers and other outside creators, bump up their image and more! It’s a great game that does not go for gimmicks to prove a sobering point that making it in the music biz is really, really hard. As you’ll see, none of this is easy or cut and dry. However, it’s possibly not really directed at artists like the review said since artists are not really at the center of this game but someone trying to start up a label. The artists kind of seem like horses in a stable or a gaggle of kids you have to take care of.

With the game, I wish you could have options to go on tour with other folks on your label (if you have more than one or two artists). I haven’t unlocked all the tiers of the game so maybe you can but I haven’t seen it yet. I would like that because it’s extremely realistic when performers go on tour, they tend to sometimes be on the same label, which rakes in more money for the record company. And it would be great to have the option of various artists on your label being able to guest on other label mates’ songs since that happens as well. And more diverse music hopefuls! They’ve got a great line up so far (some of them being light spin offs of actual performers), I want to see a bigger sea of different faces. Or at least have more different people pop up on the “Pick an artist to sign” section once your label gets more notoriety since that’s also pretty realistic as well as bigger labels have more people clamoring at them than start up labels. I think a little of a “Help” section may be nice, too, because even I was perplexed a couple times and I actually know how the industry works (for the most part). Oh, and I was a bit frustrated (because it’s me), that there were no songs for me to hear because I kept thinking, “I don’t know what the song sound like so I don’t know how to play the market!!!!! But I also wanted more input from the artist. I mean, they’re the ones the business is dealing with, I wanted to see “An artist complained about their 360 deal, they wanted a 7 months/5 song option!” or something like that (since the game goes with months and songs instead of years and albums, even though the latter is what really happens in reality). Again, as aforementioned, this game is more so pointed at the person starting a label and artist trying to express themselves without going broke.

I showed my friends this game because I thought it was that interesting and one, Vicki, had this to say:

“Mmkay so it’s an addictive strategy management game and it’s hard as sh*t. The most I’ve been able to do is sign 2 artists but I wind up going bankrupt and having to start again….Reading the review explains why the game plays like it does. Like for example, no weight is placed on the actual song and the artists are treated like not people. There is a ton of emphasis based on piracy. This game was just made to portray multimillion dollar recording agencies in a sympathetic light when if you look at how the artists are treated, they’re just money makers. In the game, you start out with £1000 when in real life, these companies have billions. Like it’s designed to make you think that the business is suffering. That being said, it’s a really fun game. Kind of like Spent.”

I actually agreed with this notion because the artists, once you think about it, are pretty faceless in a way. You get a name, face and genre but you don’t treat anyone different based on their genre, sound, etc etc. That’s probably why it frustrated me earlier because I couldn’t hear music to determine how I wanted to go with the music because the artist doesn’t really play a part except to be like a horse in a stable.

So far, this game is amazing even though there are some flaws and I highly, highly recommend you check it out. It’s a fun game that can get frustrating at times because the music industry is actually frustrating but very enjoyable, all in all. You have got to play this game. It’s playable on iOS and Androids devices.

Le1f’s music is really an interesting sound and with very interesting visuals. I first heard of him from his video “Wut”

I think this video is great because not only does the rapper show his skills in flowing with his deep, gravel voice, he shows different body types and even uses White bodies as props, which isn’t commonly seen. Usually it’s Black folks being used as objectified props (Ex: Miley Cyrus, Die Antewoord, Lilly Allen, Mackelmore, Grimes, the list goes on and on and on and on) so the imagery is really striking and (certainly refreshing). That and he has an uber crisp Harlem shake. Le1f would have been a better rapper to tote about in regards to gay rights than Macklemore because Le1f could actually count for a better representative of being gay and interacting with hip hop than Macklemore ever could, who’s only song about being gay was about having a gay scare. Not to mention, just like Paganism, gay lgbtq groups have a “White is right” problem, which is probably why Le1f doesn’t always get the shine (as well as other gay rappers who are minorities) that he deserves.

If you want to know more about him, look him up here




Orisinal Games
I used to play these games so much, I loved them dearly. Back in around 2003-2005, there weren’t a lot of gaming sites online and I remember coming across Orisinal as something cute and gentle but challenging. And these games are created and coded by a girl, which is fantastic! Look at all the work she’s done.


I really like the game High Delivery, a game where you collect flowers using a fan and deliver them to heaven. The sound and visuals are very serene, I love the game very much. I highly recommend playing it.

That’s all The Arts! for February! Next week is Ask Black Witch. Remember, good questions are appreciated, bad questions are eviscerated.